America Is the Land of Opportunity for Randomized Internet Fame


A Boston University undergrad proved last night that America truly is the land of opportunity … for fleeting internet fame. This is particularly true on social media during an event as massively followed as the presidential debate. BU’s Patrick Curran, class of 2015 and a Sigma Alpha Epsilon brother, tweeted this little zing in the hours before the debate:

For whatever reason, it took off, and since last night, it has been retweeted 22,284 times, favorited 6,191 times, and received coverage on Mashable. Wrote Curran as his post went viral:

It’s a sign of just how fickle and random the internet is that this joke, a play on D.J. Casper’s “Cha Cha Slide,” was actually made in almost the exact same form by another Twitter user over a week ago to much less effect. But Curran will live in history (and by history, we mean the next two days, probably) as the man who compared Mitt Romney’s policies to a kitschy line dance.

In a Globe column today, Joanna Weiss calls this “the year of the meme,” when “people simultaneously watch the debates and snark on Twitter.” She makes the case that these jokes, from “Big Bird” to “binders,” will decide the youth vote. But as BostInno’s Steve Annear has already noted, the real winner of the Twitter snark war isn’t Romney or Obama. It’s Curran. And actually, that’s only if he can really capitalize on his newfound following, a proposition that’s easier said than done. Even Curran seems appropriately daunted:

For now, he’ll have his moment. As Mashable’s Stephanie Haberman noted, “He’s just another guy — and a perfect example that anything that anyone posts can go viral on the Internet.” Ah, the American dream.